Conducting a Job Interview

Finding the right person for the job takes time and effort. Most often a manager or supervisor will have to interview several individuals before finding someone with the competencies to do the job well. When filling a vacant position you need to first determine the job core competencies. Identify the knowledge, skills, and experience required to do the job. Are there skills and training that can be taught to the new employee? Develop a list of questions for the job interview that answer the following question, “What do I need to know?” Be sure to look over your questions for any wording that may seem offensive to the interviewee. These are just a few of the things that need to be addressed before going into an interview. Once you have prepared for the interview it is time to move to the next stage, conducting a job interview.

When meeting for the interview choose a place where you will have little distractions. It is hard to find out what you need to know when you are being distracted and it may affect the answers you get from the interviewee. You may end up losing the best candidate because of interruptions. Remember, the candidate is doing you a favor.

Before you get started on the job interview, explain the purpose of the interview. Address any terms of confidentiality and indicate how long the interview is going to take. Answer any questions they may have at that time. Start the interview with an “ice-breaker”. When conducting the job interview use primarily behavior-based and open-ended questions. Open-ended questions are questions that require detailed responses and get the interviewee to open up. “What do you think of…?” is an example of an open-ended question. Behavior-based refers to what a person has done or is doing.

Don’t just stop at asking the questions, probe for additional information. Create a conversation-type interview using open-ended questions. Allow time for the candidate to think about the question and provide you with an answer. Take notes when conducting the job interview, if you are recording the interview ask the interviewee if it is okay to record them. Rate the responses you get for each question on a scale from 1 to 5. Be sure to be consistent with each candidate. Ask the same questions. That way you will be able to compare their responses and make an informed decision.

In concluding the interview, explain to them the hiring process. Provide them with a follow up date and contact information to call on if they have questions. Answer any questions they have and thank them for taking the time to meet with you.

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